A.S. Council Postpones Opening A.S. Store

A committee to create a student -run A.S. store will present its business plan to the University Centers Advisory Board by Week 5 of Spring Quarter.

The A.S. committee hopes to open the store — which would sell UCSD merchandise, including Greek apparel and Sun God paraphernalia — in Price Center by Fall Quarter 2010.

The committee had originally hoped to complete and submit its proposal to UCAB by the end of Fall Quarter 2009, but Vice President of Finance and Resources Peter Benesch said that the process has been slower than anticipated because the committee underestimated all the research on merchandise and demand necessary to the project.

“Where we are now is where we thought we would be last quarter,” Benesch said. “The idea of completely understanding all the factors that go into opening the store was infinitely more complicated than originally expected. There were a lot of factors we needed to investigate, which we have done now.”

According to committee chair and Campuswide Senator Tobias Haglund, the committee members spent Winter Quarter discussing what merchandise to sell and how to advertise.

“This quarter we’ve kind of mapped out the business plan we want to prepare,” Haglund said. “We’ve worked mainly on the structure of the store we want to create. A lot of that has just been me talking to people at other stores at other campuses.”

To facilitate the process, the committee is speaking with a student consultant from the Rady School of Management.

“This quarter we’ve met with a consultant and we essentially have a consultant on the team to help us finish the business plan,” Haglund said.

The committee is also in the process of creating an A.S. Store Advisory Board, made up of six faculty members and two undergraduate students. The store’s student managers would update the board on the store’s progress to gain input on how the store could improve and expand.

“Right now we’re doing a recruitment process, finding the people we think would be appropriate and beneficial to that board,” Haglund said. “I’ve been sending out emails to as many people as possible, trying to collect people who would be interested and good for that position. We’re hoping to have the board filled by the end of finals week so they can see pieces of the business proposal as they are completed.”

Haglund hopes to submit the proposal before the current A.S. Council completes its term, which is Week 5 of next quarter. If the proposal is completed, submitted and approved by that time, the store could open by Fall Quarter 2010, according to Haglund.

“I would love to see it open up in fall next year,” Haglund said. “I’m definitely going to continue working with them to do anything I can to help them. If we get it approved by UCAB in the middle of spring, we have all the time to make sure all our I’s are dotted and our T’s are crossed.”

Haglund said, despite the stall, he remains optimistic about the project and plans to work persistently toward its completion.

“I want to make sure [the proposal] is presented to UCAB before my term is up,” Haglund said. “That’s kind of my obligation to A.S., to myself, to my constituents — to finish that before my term is up.”

Readers can contact Ayelet Bitton at [email protected].

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